Your guide to Six Sigma certifications

    If you’re looking to become an expert in process and quality management, you need to be Six Sigma certified. Read on to explore everything you need to know.

    Published on: 29 January 2021


    The history and foundations of Six Sigma

    Where did Six Sigma begin?

    In the 1980s, an American engineer named Bill Smith introduced a quality improvement strategy that changed project management forever. Whilst working for leading telecommunications company Motorola, Smith noticed that there wasn’t currently a way to measure quality in enough detail. Enter Six Sigma. Today, Motorola credits Six Sigma in saving them over $16 billion and the method has been adopted all over the world.

    What is the purpose and goals of Six Sigma?

    Six Sigma gives you the tools to examine processes and identify improvements. It aims to reduce the time, variability and defects within a process.

    Consider this example...

    You work for a company that manufacturers laptops. The company has noticed a reduction in the amount of laptops produced each day and there have been reports that the laptops are not performing to the standards expected.

    Thanks to your Six Sigma training, you will have the tools and techniques to identify what is causing these issues. You’ll know exactly how to improve the manufacturing process and guarantee the quality of the product.

    Who is Six Sigma ideal for?

    Getting certified in Six Sigma is ideal for project management professionals at all stages of their career. It is particularly relevant to those working in the manufacturing and production industries.

    Learning People | Six Sigma Project Manager smiling

    The Six Sigma certifications roadmap

    There are 3 main certifications surrounding the Six Sigma methodology. From entry level to the experienced process manager.

    Six Sigma Yellow belt

    Study time: 25-30 hours

    Prerequisites: None

    Overview: This is the first step on the Six Sigma certification pathway. You’ll explore the foundations of the methodology and be ready to assist in a process support role upon completion.

    Six Sigma Green belt

    Study time: 40-50 hours

    Prerequisites: 3 years experience in 1+ areas of Six Sigma concepts

    Overview: Once you’re ready, you can train to become Six Sigma Green Belt certified to document your knowledge of Six Sigma tools and processes. You’ll then be ready to lead small quality improvement projects, under the supervision of a Six Sigma Black Belt.

    Six Sigma Black belt

    Study time: 60-70 hours

    Prerequisites: 3 years experience with one project with signed affidavits or 2 completed projects with signed affidavits

    Overview: With the Six Sigma black belt you’ll be able to fully explain and implement Six Sigma philosophies and principles.

    Becoming a well rounded process manager

    The demand for project managers

    With the pandemic putting the pressure on businesses to adapt to succeed, the demand for skilled project managers is higher than ever. Research by Glassdoor showed project management to be one of the top jobs hiring in 2021.

    Having a Six Sigma certification on your CV shows employers that you are going to be a highly valuable addition to their organisation. The main benefits of Six Sigma are...

    • Can be applied to every industry
    • Extremely effective at reducing business costs
    • Improves productivity
    • Delivers based on customer satisfaction

    But is this enough? It’s worth considering adding a range of project management certifications to your toolbelt to ensure you are prepared for every aspect of the role. 

    We offer training packages that combine the process, quality management of Six Sigma and the global standards of project management that a Project Management Institute (PMI) certification provides.

    The ultimate Six Sigma training collections

    Learning People’s CAPM and Six Sigma collections

    This collection is perfect for professionals at the start of looking to begin their project management career. You’ll be introduced to the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge) through your CAPM training to complement either your Six Sigma Yellow Belt or Six Sigma Green Belt.

    Learning People’s PMP and Six Sigma collections

    Seasoned project management professionals can document their strong experience with the Project Management Professional (PMP) exam. Add in either the Six Sigma Yellow Belt or Six Sigma Green Belt and this collection will show your eye for efficiency above all other candidates.

    What are you waiting for?

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    Topics: Project Management